Friday, August 5, 2011

Where Have I Been?

So I have COMPLETELY neglected my blog for months. Shame on me!!! It is not that I haven't been cooking and trying out new fun and exciting recipes or searching out major deals at the grocery store. I honestly just got out of the habit and now I am getting back in it. :-)

Maybe if I start out by posting my families menu for next week it will be a reminder to post recipes. (Don't get your hopes up but we shall see)

Weekly Menu 8/7
Sunday: Homemade Pizza & Salad

Monday: Fried Pork Chops, Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans

Tuesday: Spaghetti, Salad, Bread (great meal for a work night because it is from sauce that I made a HUGE batch of and froze)

Wednesday: Grilled Teriyaki Chicken with Grilled Pineapple Salsa, Roasted New Potatoes, Sauteed Cabbage

Friday: Tortillas (basically what we call tacos with soft corn tortillas), Rice, Corn

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Some Recent Cupcakes

Just some cupcakes that I have made recently for different orders. Some were for the Lynchburg Police Department's Ball, a Super Bowl party, etc etc.

Craziness at Kroger this Week

My Kroger stockpiling was awesome this week! The original price for this was $252.00 and I ended up paying $25.00!!!
Think that we will be eating pasta for awhile??

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

So I COMPLETELY cheated on this one. These are mint chocolate chip cookies that started out as a bag of sugar cookie dough mix from Betty Crocker. I get at least 10-15 emails a day from different companies and sites with recipes to try and this one showed up in my Betty Crocker email for a few days in a row. I decided to take a look at it and the reviews were actually good so I figured that I would try them. I already had everything on hand that was needed thanks to some random sale earlier in the year.

First off, these were really easy to make and were so good right out of the oven! They tasted just like a girl scout thin mint, just softer and chewier. I definitely plan to tuck this recipe away for when I have a mint chocolate chip craving. :-)

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies
from Betty

1 bag sugar cookie mix
1 stick butter
1 egg
1/2 tsp of mint extract
6-8 drop green food coloring
1 cup creme de menthe baking chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

- Preheat oven to 350
- Combine cookie mix, butter, egg, extract and food coloring until soft dough forms
- Stir in baking chips
- Use a small cookie scoop and place cookies 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet
- Bake 8 - 10 minutes

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Pioneer Woman's Cinnamon Rolls

All that I am going to say for this post is that you MUST make these cinnamon rolls. They are one of the best things that I have ever made and are probably the number one thing that Ree Drummond is known for. I am not going to elaborate about their delicious gooeyness because you should be able to tell from the picture and the ingredients in the recipe that they are SINFUL! Make them today!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Monster Cookies

Yay for snow days! Today Virginia got hit with a small snow storm that kept Mady and Savannah out of school. I have been promising Mady that we would try out the recipe for Monster cookies that I found on The Pioneer Woman's (my hero) website. Of course, Mady had no clue what was even in them. She was more intrigued by the name Monster being associated with cookies.

Since Lindsey and Joel live about 900 feet behind me now, I met Lindsey halfway down the driveway and stole the girls from her for awhile. After warming up from playing in the snow, we mixed up the cookies and got the first batch in the oven while the girls watched Alvin and the Chipmunks (an early Christmas present from Nana). The cookies turned out great! I love that they have oats, pecans and peanut butter in them (to make you feel somewhat healthy). These ingredients are hidden well in the cookies and the girls inhaled them without thinking twice. They normally won't touch an oatmeal cookie with a 10 ft pole.

I changed the recipe just a little bit to adjust to the ingredients that I had on hand. I also read quite a few replies on Ree's recipe and supposedly most "monster" cookie recipes have peanut butter in them, (Her's didn't) so I decided to add 1/2 cup of that in. Her recipe also called for peanut butter chips. I didn't have those but substituted butterscotch chips and the cookies were just fine.

I think that my favorite part of the cookie is the addition of the rice krispies. You fold these in carefully at the end so that you don't crush them. They give the cookies an unexpected crunch that is great!

Here's a shot of the girls with all of the ingredients measured out and ready to start the destruction. Sorry about the blurriness of the picture...I took it with my phone.

Monster Cookies
(adapted from Ree Drummond)

2 sticks butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups brown sugra
2 eggs
1 TBL vanilla
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 cups oats (quick cooking or old-fashioned)
1/2 cup M&M's
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
2 1/4 cup rice krispie cereal

- Cream sugars and butter
- Add eggs and blend well
- Add vanilla and peanut butter and blend well
- Add the flour, soda, powder and salt and blend well
- Begin folding in the oats, M&M's, chips and nuts
- Add the rice krispies last and blend just until combined
- Bake at 375 until golden brown

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Chocolate-Cinnamon Bundt Cake with Mocha Icing

I tried out another Bon Appetit recipe this weekend that ended up a big success. This is a chocolate bundt cake with cinnamon and then a rich mocha icing on top and it is a chocolate lovers dream. In the magazine it is under a header called, "cheap chic party dessert" and they say that it is cost friendly because all of the ingredients are things that many people keep in their pantry. (Although I have to say that I bought the instant coffee for this because I am NOT a coffee drinker as much as I would like to be.) My office mates will love this one tomorrow because I don't need/want it sitting around my house.

The recipe was super easy and I made it with a hand mixer instead of dragging out the Kitchen Aid. I did have problems with it sticking to the pan as much as I sprayed it with cooking spray. I will use parchment next time. The glaze is my favorite part because it adds a great moistness to the cake. The flavor of the coffee is very mild (mild enough that I can eat it and enjoy it).

Chocolate-Cinnamon Bundt Cake with Mocha Icing
(from Bon Appetit - month unknown)
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
4 tsp instant espresso powder, divided (I used instant coffee because I couldn't find instant espresso)
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups packed golden brown sugar, divided
1 cup vegetable oil
1 TBL vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/4 mini semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1/4 cup butter, room temp

- Preheat oven to 350. Generously grease a nonstick bundt pan with oil
- Whisk boiling water, cocoa powder, and 2 tsp espresso powder in a bowl.
- Whisk 2 cups flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl
- Using electric mixer, beat 2 cups brown sugar, 1 cup oil, and 1 TBL vanilla in large bowl to blend.
- Add eggs; beat to blend. Beat mixture until smooth, about 30 seconds longer. Beat in half of flour mixture, then cocoa mixture. Add remaining flour mixture and beat to blend.
- Fold in 1 cup chocolate chips and transfer to pan.
- Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Cool cake 10 minutes and invert onto rack. Cool 15 minutes longer.
- In a small saucepan, stir remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar, 2 tsp espresso powder, and 2 TBL water until sugar melts.
- Remove from heat. Add butter and remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips. Stir until butter and chips melt. Cool slightly.
- Using spoon, drizzle icing over cake and allow to cool completely.

Buttermilk Biscuits with Green Onions, Black Pepper and Kosher Salt

I made these biscuits a couple of weeks ago to go along with some soup for dinner. I have to say that I was plesantly surprised by these. I have never been a great biscuit maker so these still need some work as far as thickness goes, etc but they were well liked by my family. These are not your typical buttermilk biscuit. These have minced green onions, cornmeal, and black pepper throughout. Although I really liked these, I think that I am still a plain buttermilk biscuit girl (with butter and homemade strawberry jam on top of course). My sister loved them and wants the recipe to add to her collection. I guess that's a good thing. :-)

Buttermilk Biscuits with Green Onions, Black Pepper, and Sea Salt
(from Bon Appetit - Nov 2008)
3/4 cup chilled buttermilk
1/2 cup finely chopped green onions
2 cups self-rising flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
3 TBL sugar
1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper plus additional for sprinkling
1/2 cup chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes, plus 1 TBL melted butter
Coarse sea salt

- Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 425. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Combine buttermilk and green onions in medium bowl.
- Whisk flour, cornmeal, sugar, and 1/2 tsp pepper in large bowl to blend. Add 1/2 cup chilled butter and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal.
- Add buttermilk mixture and stir until moist and clumps form.
- Gather dough together. Turn dough out onto floured surface and kneed gently just to combine, about 3 to 4 turns.
- Roll out to 3/4 inch thickness (I actually would prefer thicker) and cut with a 2 inch biscuit cutter
- Place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Brush tops with melted butter. Sprinkle each lightly with coarse sea salt and ground black pepper.
- Bake biscuits until golden, about 20 minutes.

Weekly Menu: 9/19 - 9/24

Well I guess that it is time to get back to the real world. I have been out of town on vacation so I have been bad and haven't posted in awhile. :-) I am trying a couple new recipes this week so expect some recipe posts later on...

Sunday Lunch - Cabbage and White Bean Soup with Sausage (previous post here)

Sunday Dinner - Jambalaya and 1 hour French Bread (need to post both of these recipes)

Monday - Out for my Dad's Birthday!

Tuesday - Cheeseburgers, French Fries and Green Beans

Wednesday - Chicken Fajitas with Homemade Guacamole, Spanish Rice and Corn

Thursday - White Bean and Turkey Chili, Cornbread

I hope that everyone has a good week!!